Sorry this was posted late. The dog ate my computer.

This is the web site that gets you free Handspring Visors, suggests stocks that sometimes go up (generally, the ones I am short), inspires conservatives to be even more compassionate, and offers time-saving recipes for Cooking Like A Guy™.

How to top all that? Well, by saving your life. This has been going around the Internet, attributed to a newsletter from one of the chapters of an organization called Mended Hearts.

Let’s say it’s 6:15 p.m. and you’re driving home alone after an unusually hard day on the job. You’re really tired, upset and frustrated. Suddenly you start experiencing severe pain in your chest that starts to radiate out into your arm and up into your jaw. You are only about five miles from the hospital nearest your home, unfortunately you don’t know if you’ll be able to make it that far. What can you do? You’ve been trained in CPR but the guy that taught the course neglected to tell you how to perform it on yourself.


Since many people are alone when they suffer a heart attack, this article seemed in order. Without help, the person whose heart stops beating properly and who begins to feel faint, has only about 10 seconds left before losing consciousness. However, these victims can help themselves by coughing repeatedly and very vigorously. A deep breath should be taken before each cough, and the cough must be deep and prolonged, as when producing sputum from deep inside the chest. A breath and a cough must be repeated about every two seconds without let up until help arrives, or until the heart is beating normally again. Deep breaths get oxygen into the lungs and coughing movements squeeze the heart and keep the blood circulating. The squeezing pressure on the heart also helps it regain normal rhythm. In this way, heart attack victims can get to a hospital. Tell as many other people as possible about this, it could save their lives!

— From Health Cares, Rochester General Hospital via Chapter 240’s newsletter

So I went to Mended Hearts, just to be sure to give them proper credit, and found this:

“How to Survive a Heart Attack When Alone” was initially published in a local chapter newsletter, without first verifying a medical source. The American Heart Association does not endorse the coughing procedure, and does not teach this as part of the core curriculum in any course. This procedure has been used in a medical setting (not related to heart attacks) with physicians available to diagnose the specific problem, and to instruct the patient how to cough. Therefore, it is not a recommended procedure for the general public. We encourage the public to call 911 in the event of an emergency.

I’ve considered this seemingly contradictory advice and come to the following conclusion: quit smoking, eat smart, exercise, and don’t let the stress get to you.

Tomorrow: Are You Ready for a Flood?


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